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BSNL to outsource 3G mobile services
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Quote:Reeling under a financial crisis, state-owned Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) plans to outsource its third generation (3G) mobile services.

The company is working on details for a franchisee agreement and would invite expressions of interest (EoIs) by the end of this month, Chairman and Managing Director Kuldeep Goyal told Business Standard.

BSNL, along with the other state-run telecom firm, MTNL, had got 3G spectrum much ahead of private companies, as the government wanted to give the two public sector companies the first-mover advantage. MTNL offers services in Delhi and Mumbai and BSNL in the rest of the country.

Outsourcing would help BSNL cut the investment it needs to make to roll out 3G services. The company wants to garner a substantial market share in 3G before the first quarter of next year, when more aggressive private players are expected to offer similar services.

“We expect 5 per cent of our total user base to come from 3G. This figure might go up to 10-15 per cent of our mobile customer base in the coming time,” Goyal said. Currently, 3G subscribers form a minuscule part of its total user base of over 60 million.

The franchisee could be an existing mobile service provider or a company which had not won or bid for 3G spectrum, and would manage customer acquisition, marketing and sales of 3G services across the country, he said.

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